Technology as latest "solution" to... technology - Politics Forum.org | PoFo

Wandering the information superhighway, he came upon the last refuge of civilization, PoFo, the only forum on the internet ...

All general discussion about politics that doesn't belong in any of the other forums.

Moderator: PoFo Political Circus Mods

#15117986
Executive Summary

So many potentially life-ending problems exist right now on the planet Earth, that there are many companies all over the world busily working on technological "solutions." Most of these technology-sourced "solutions" are actually just patches for the problems caused by previous technologies - previous "solutions."

And importantly, the types of technology sought out each time - the particular types of "solutions" - are always those that can be profitable to the corporations that were seeking a "solution."

Problem-manufacturing is now the most important function of most industries, having replaced "utility-manufacturing" only a few decades after the industrial revolution conquered the world during WW2.

....

Content

Image

The Structure of Scientific Revolutions is a book rich in its ability to reveal the process of what we usually call "progress."

But it also reveals that each time, the "problem" has been caused by the universal adaptation of another "scientific revolution."

For example, the adaptation of "agriculture" as a lifestyle *causes* the problem of overpopulation and child neglect, which is *solved* with marriage and fidelity oaths, which leads to lack of satisfaction with sexual life, which leads to pornography... etc. Each new "solution" generates a cascading list of profitable "solutions."

soundtrack
#15118204
ckaihatsu wrote:There's going to be something scientifically better than pornography?

The MeToo movement seems to have been the technological "fix" for the side effects of pornography.

Also, the very public trial of Harvey Weinstein was another "techno patch" for something much larger than sore hands and a screen image.
#15118211
I wonder if I should read that book. I didn't realize the book coined the phrase "paradigm shift" with respect to scientific discovery and innovation.

Anyway, yes I agree @QatzelOk, that ultimately technological "solutions" always bring about a new set of "problems" that also need more technological "solutions". It continues ad naseum. This is great for the profit machine we call capitalism, but not necessarily great for humans. However, we are constantly told that these "solutions" are the keys to happiness, when in reality, they aren't.

I am guilty of being a part of that process given I work in tech. We talk about this at the lunch table all the time "what the fuck are we doing?" is often a question I bring up with my coworkers. :hmm: Another assertion we make at the lunch table "I'm pretty sure we will bring about the demise of humanity with the unintended consequences of all the shit we're inventing." :hmm:

At the same time, we're all kind of trapped into this existence given the current global mode of production and consumption. At the same time, humans are naturally curious and inventive, which means, we cannot help ourselves, and we will also seek to invent "solutions." It is as though we are meant to destroy ourselves. Our destiny is self-destruction.

It's all so depressing when you stop and think about it all.
#15118217
We need new technology to cope with the problems created by old technology. The fundamentalists will say that all technology is inherently bad because the new technology may produce new problems. Technology is not inherently bad, but fundamentalism is.

It took more than 100 years to understand the effect the internal combustion engine has on the climate. Now, it's too late, People will rather ruin the climate than do without personal mobility. Thus, we need better technology that doesn't have that effect. If that new technology produces other negative side-effects, we'll have to develop even better technology to cope with that. It's like evolution on the human scale. The human mind is part of evolution, so are the technologies produced by the human mind. There is simply no way of going back to the pre-industrial age. Having said that, society needs to discriminate between desirable and non-desirable technology. It should not be left to the profit motive of the corporations.
#15118221
ckaihatsu wrote:There's going to be something scientifically better than pornography?

Hyper-realistic sex robots that can past the Turing Test. See the brilliant film "Ex Machina", or the tv show "Westworld".

When those begin to exist I would assume they would dramatically reduce problems such as rape and unwanted pregnancy. But they would probably significantly undermine real human relationships.
#15118222
Rancid wrote:Our destiny is self-destruction.

Or rather totalitarianism. It's not just that solving technological problems demands more and more technology, solving civilisational problems also requires more and more civilisation, and civilisation or being civilised is not about freedom at all. The more technologically advanced and civilised you are the less free you are, actually. Animals in the wild are completely uncivilised and totally free, and we're becoming the total opposite of them, or rather our own ancestors before civilisation: technologically advanced hyper-civilised ant-people working, living, and multiplying in the service of the colony.

However, by animals I don't mean ants, of course. If you don't believe ants are civilised, think again. They could be our role models, especially if we mean to live underground.

ImageThe complex nest architecture of the Ponerinae ant Odontomachus chelifer
#15118225
I believe that most changes in society, whether via technology or cultural change etc., bring both good things and bad things. For instance, divorce has freed people, especially women, from abusive and unfulfilling relationships, which is good. But on the negative, it has also vastly increased broken homes and has arguably harmed the emotional development of many children etc.

Similarly, the decrease in religious beliefs in the west has increased rational and scientific thinking over dogma and freed people from the repressive social constraints of their religion, which is good, but on the negative it has reduced the connectedness of communities, and increased moral nihilism, and arguably made some people more hopeless and depressed by removing the psychologically comforting aspects of theistic belief.
#15118228
Rancid wrote:I am guilty of being a part of that process given I work in tech. We talk about this at the lunch table all the time "what the fuck are we doing?" is often a question I bring up with my coworkers. :hmm: Another assertion we make at the lunch table "I'm pretty sure we will bring about the demise of humanity with the unintended consequences of all the shit we're inventing." :hmm:

At the same time, we're all kind of trapped into this existence given the current global mode of production and consumption. At the same time, humans are naturally curious and inventive, which means, we cannot help ourselves, and we will also seek to invent "solutions." It is as though we are meant to destroy ourselves. Our destiny is self-destruction.

It's all so depressing when you stop and think about it all.

The thing with technology is that it's a pandora's box. Once something is invented, it can't be uninvented. It's also a chain of progress that's virtually impossible to stop. ie: If you quit your tech job because you are anti-tech and want to live like an Amish person, somebody else will just take your job. If the USA as a whole society said "fuck it, let's all go Amish, screw tech and let's save humanity", it would mean little because there will be other countries who will proceed down the route of technological discovery and eventually invent the tech that the USA would have.

Also, with regards to humans destroying ourselves due to tech, I think that's overblown, save for global nuclear annihilation. If you know anything about how ecology works, overpopulation of any animal species that begins to reproduce that so vastly that the environment can't support it (ie: not enough food sources to feed every member of the species) means that this species won't usually go extinct, but the population with simply reduce to what the environment can support. For humans, this means that if we continue to increase in population and there isn't enough food to feed everythone, it just means that those unable to acquire enough food will starve to death while others will live, and population growth will naturally stagnate/slow, or be reduced. Given that the most technologically developed countries have population growth rates below replacement levels, it's safe to assume that eventually the human pop will stabilize or even decrease. We can also assume that future technology will increase the ability of us to make more food, increase crop yields, or even have humans colonizing other planets.

In terms of something like climate change, it's a danger and it may lead to many human deaths but the likelihood of it causing humans as a species to go extinct is very slim, given our ability to adapt via even more technology. It's impossible to even fathom what kinds of technology humans will have to fight or adapt to climate change 50 or 100 years from now. The airplane and the Model T automobile are barely over 100 years old, the internet is barely 30 years old, smartphones barely 10 years old etc. My friend's dad remembers driving in a Model T as a kid, and riding in horse-and-buggy on roads that weren't paved. It's insane.
#15118302
Unthinking Majority wrote:The thing with technology is that it's a pandora's box. Once something is invented, it can't be uninvented.

That's correct. And because this invention often creates a profit-driven elite of its own, you have to argue against billionaires and their bought governments once the tech is established. Good luck with that. These billionaires also control the production of propaganda (advertising) and they usually have an army of social-climbinb "journalists" to back up their every lie.

Unthinking Majority wrote:I believe that most changes in society, whether via technology or cultural change etc., bring both good things and bad things.

Marshal Mcluhan went even further and called the advantages and disadvantages of every technology "extensions and amputations." Think about what it means to constantly amputate parts of your body for immediate "advantages" elsewhere in your body. "I think I'll cut off my fingers to get more blood-flow to my brain." The week after, you're removing the skin from your knees to add bulk to your luscious lips. This Russian Roulette with amputations will eventually lead to death. In the case of cascading technological changes, the 'amputation' can arrive on a huge scale - like extinction.

Image

Beren wrote:solving civilisational problems also requires more and more civilisation, and civilisation or being civilised is not about freedom at all. The more technologically advanced and civilised you are the less free you are...

One of the important "amputations" of each technology takes the form of "behavior changes" that are required by the new tech. Car circulation means you are no longer free to walk or play on streets, noise is a constant, and children are constantly at risk of sudden death. What is amputated here is "natural human behavior," and this is a critical ampuation for long-term survival. The restrictive behaviorism that techs require are like a form of "self-pollution."

Rancid wrote:I'm sure the corporations will take care of all of us.

Corporations are another technology with the following "advantage" over natural human organizations: Corporations have no empathy for humans or other species. That's how they are structured, and it's why they exist.

This lack of empathy allows them to go much further in exploiting natural systems and in destroying any opposition to their operations. Corporations amputate natural human empathy in order to extend human exploitation and dominance of the entire planet.

Image
Child-targeting corporate advertising technology has "extended" children's ability to determine their own nutritional intake
#15118324
QatzelOk wrote:
[T]he adaptation of "agriculture" as a lifestyle *causes* the problem of overpopulation and child neglect, which is *solved* with marriage and fidelity oaths, which leads to lack of satisfaction with sexual life, which leads to pornography... etc. Each new "solution" generates a cascading list of profitable "solutions."


QatzelOk wrote:
The MeToo movement seems to have been the technological "fix" for the side effects of pornography.



I'm sorry, but I don't get this formulation of yours *at all*.

It's a real *stretch* to term the MeToo movement as being 'technological', when in fact it's *socio-political*, or *societal*.

And how does it follow from the phenomenon of *pornography*, and how is pornography a 'problem', as you imply, that 'needs' 'fixing' -- ?

I think you're assuming a very *conservative* / traditional lifestyle 'premise' of the nuclear family being the *normative* social unit, for society, as though individuals in society *must* have some default biological local linkages, as to family, when we actually live in a very *bureaucratized* society, and have been for *centuries* now.


QatzelOk wrote:
Also, the very public trial of Harvey Weinstein was another "techno patch" for something much larger than sore hands and a screen image.



Whatever. This is very convoluted in construction and *far* from being clear. You may want to *rephrase*.
#15118327
Unthinking Majority wrote:
Hyper-realistic sex robots that can past the Turing Test. See the brilliant film "Ex Machina", or the tv show "Westworld".



Nah, she wasn't my type, but thanks.


Unthinking Majority wrote:
When those begin to exist I would assume they would dramatically reduce problems such as rape and unwanted pregnancy. But they would probably significantly undermine real human relationships.



So how's that working out for you?


= D
#15118332
ckaihatsu wrote:It's a real *stretch* to term the MeToo movement as being 'technological', when in fact it's *socio-political*, or *societal*.

Yes, but it is entirely dependent on a media-blinded audience who get almost all of their societal norms from electronic media. Thus, it is a construct that was made possible (inevitable?) by a modern tech.

And how does it follow from the phenomenon of *pornography*, and how is pornography a 'problem', as you imply, that 'needs' 'fixing' -- ?

Before the invention of marriage, fidelity oaths, etc., sexual frustration would be no more a problem for humans than it is for other animals that live in the wild. So "porn" is a tech-based "solution" for the lack of sexual satisfaction from a culture of sexual taboo-making and restricted sexual behavior.

One of the "problems" with the porno solution (to sexual frustration) is that pornography, like most media, leads to a decline in empathy, which leads to violent and unnatural sexual behaviors and attitudes, as well as to other harmful changes in human behaviors and attitudes.

The MeToo (torch-carrying) movement has a lot to do with the unnatural behaviors that have ensued because of restrictive sexual practices (a "solution" to agriculture's monogamy-requirement). The MeToo "public relations campaign" is also a result of capitalism and its dehumanization of exploitable people (for money and power). No one is allowed to have natural sexuality and emotions any more (because these are too dangerous in an agricultural civilization) and this leads many people to go insane, and this insanity leads to more restrictive behaviors (like men having to act like wimps at the office) which cause more insanity and social capital decline. Finally, the MeToo movement is a reflection of how we have downloaded all our social movements to commercial media, to do what it likes with them (and us).

I think you're assuming a very *conservative* / traditional lifestyle 'premise' of the nuclear family being the *normative* social unit, for society, as though individuals in society *must* have some default biological local linkages, as to family, when we actually live in a very *bureaucratized* society, and have been for *centuries* now.

No. The narrative I am building suggest that nothing other than a return to outdoor living and nomadism will restore human social capital and survivability.
#15118335
QatzelOk wrote:
Yes, but it is entirely dependent on a media-blinded audience who get almost all of their societal norms from electronic media. Thus, it is a construct that was made possible (inevitable?) by a modern tech.



*Or*, it was akin to the Salem witch trials, sociologically, which weren't technological at all.

If these were 'sex criminals', then why weren't their cases simply handled by the courts, as allegedly *criminal* cases?

The populist *politicization* of these individuals was *inappropriate*, and wasn't really *political*.


QatzelOk wrote:
Before the invention of marriage, fidelity oaths, etc., sexual frustration would be no more a problem for humans than it is for other animals that live in the wild. So "porn" is a tech-based "solution" for the lack of sexual satisfaction from a culture of sexual taboo-making and restricted sexual behavior.



Or maybe the iconification of the female body (in particular)(heh), is particular to biological sex / gender itself, and 'porn' has *always* existed, irrespectively of technology:


Image


---


QatzelOk wrote:
One of the "problems" with the porno solution (to sexual frustration) is that pornography, like most media, leads to a decline in empathy, which leads to violent and unnatural sexual behaviors and attitudes, as well as to other harmful changes in human behaviors and attitudes.



One could say this about *any* hobbyist-type pursuit, like art in general, etc.


QatzelOk wrote:
The MeToo (torch-carrying) movement has a lot to do with the unnatural behaviors that have ensued because of restrictive sexual practices (a "solution" to agriculture's monogamy-requirement). The MeToo "public relations campaign" is also a result of capitalism and its dehumanization of exploitable people (for money and power). No one is allowed to have natural sexuality and emotions any more (because these are too dangerous in an agricultural civilization) and this leads many people to go insane, and this insanity leads to more restrictive behaviors (like men having to act like wimps at the office) which cause more insanity and social capital decline. Finally, the MeToo movement is a reflection of how we have downloaded all our social movements to commercial media, to do what it likes with them (and us).



Okay, *this* sounds a lot better -- more like sociological gender studies. I myself would just chalk it up to *personal social power relations*, on the part of the alleged perpetrators.


QatzelOk wrote:
No. The narrative I am building suggest that nothing other than a return to outdoor living and nomadism will restore human social capital and survivability.



Hmmmm, it's *interesting* -- I tend to subscribe to the mindset that 'human nature' is infinitely *malleable*, and that we (and animals, too) can adapt to *all kinds* of social environments, not to say that they're all qualitatively equal or healthy for the individual.

I'll reiterate that the *biggest* problem with the MeToo movement was its lynch-mob mentality, and its politicization of *individuals* (too small-scale), from without.
#15118340
ckaihatsu wrote:Or maybe the iconification of the female body (in particular)(heh), is particular to biological sex / gender itself, and 'porn' has *always* existed, irrespectively of technology

Maybe it's always existed, however, by the help of technological advancement and virtual reality or robot technology it could completely replace real sexuality someday, which clearly points out the path human civilisation is actually taking.
#15118341
Beren wrote:
Maybe it's always existed, however, by the help of technological advancement and virtual reality or robot technology it could completely replace real sexuality someday, which clearly points out the path human civilisation is actually taking.



This is rather *far-fetched*, and you're not specifying what your *concern* is, here.
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 17

I like this entry point on considering ethics as n[…]

The US Government Won’t Care About Your Definiti[…]

Campaign Kanye

:lol:

These people are nuts. This article from a few […]